The United Nations’ Food & Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has embarked on internal reforms, aimed at streamlining its bureaucracy, to make it “more flexible and responsive to members’ needs”.

FAO director-general Jacques Diouf launched the plan at the organisation’s governing conference in Rome, along with requesting an annual budget of at least US$759m (up to US$790m) for 2006 and 2007, up from 2004 and 2005s’ US$749m.

Diouf said he planned to cut the percentage of the budget paying for staff from 66% to 60%, losing 122 posts. Also the proportion of professional jobs at FAO headquarters in Rome would be reduced from 70% to 60%.